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Some thoughts on Waitangi Day

Written By: - Date published: 8:01 am, February 6th, 2014 - 147 comments
Categories: john key, labour, Maori Issues, national - Tags:

Norm Kirk Waitangi

Mōrena, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa.

This is a blog post I have had a few goes at.  The benefit of blogging is that you can repeat and refine.  And something as important as Waitangi Day needs ongoing reassessment.

In 1973 in a stroke of brillance Crosby Textor could never dream of Labour Prime Minister Norm Kirk on Waitangi day grabbed the hand of a young male Maori, and walked onto Waitangi Marae.  The juxtaposition was exquisite, old and young, powerful and powerless, Pakeha and Maori.  The feeling of partnership was overwhelming.  The image cemented Big Norm’s status as one of the saints of the Labour Party.

John Key tried his own version of this.  He went even further and transported young Aroha Nathan from McGehan Close in Auckland to Waitangi with him.  The imagery is jarring though, it was a carefully scripted photo shoot and the use of a Ministerial Limo to do the transporting shows how far away from a solution for poverty this was.  Aroha’s subsequent life experiences suggest that Key’s expressed desire to do something about the “under class” was for political purposes only and not heart felt.

John Key Aroha Nathan

This year at Waitangi things have been remarkably peaceful.  And it is noticeable that John Key’s focus has changed.  Instead of reaching out to the “under class” he is now blowing hard on the dog whistle and preying for some dissent so that he can “reach out” to the red necks amongst us.  And the cynics amongst us may think that he has resorted to fibbing in the hope that he can shore up sufficient support amongst his core vote to hold onto power.

Much has been written about the Treaty of Waitangi and the treachery of the Crown but I will try again to very briefly set out my understanding of what happened to show why I believe Maori have a right to feel aggrieved at their treatment.  To any wing nut out there feel free to point out what you believe are my misunderstandings so that we can have a proper debate about the issue.

The treaty was part enlightenment and part reflection of the reality of the time.  In 1840 Pakeha was heavily outnumbered by Maori in Aotearoa.  Statistics New Zealand estimate that at the time there were no more than 2,050 Pakeha compared to 80,000 Maori in New Zealand.  The Pakeha that were present were mainly traders and had no long term commitment to the place.  But there were those interested in setting up colonies such as the Wakefield brothers who through the New Zealand Company had started to transport immigrants and promise landholdings in areas where they did not own land.  And the French were coming.

The English wanted to control the colonisation of New Zealand and keep it to themselves.  A treaty, any treaty with Iwi was vital. Captain William Hobson was sent to New Zealand with instructions to annex part of the land and place it under English rule.  He was specifically instructed to sign a treaty with local Maori.

The treaty itself was drafted by the Missionary Henry Williams on February 4, 1840.  The document was in Maori and English.  The basic problem that has continued to cause so much controversy was the use of words with different meanings in each draft.

For instance in Article 1 the English version ceded sovereignty of New Zealand to the Crown.  But in the Maori version the word “kawanatanga” was used.  This has been translated to mean “governance” which is clearly not the same as “sovereignty”.  And in Article 2 the English version guaranteed “undisturbed possession” of all their “properties”, but the Maori version guaranteed “tino rangatiratanga” (full authority) over “taonga” (treasures, which may be intangible).

The core problem is that the Maori version was signed by the parties.  The fact that there was an English translation, clearly an incorrect one, should not affect the interpretation.  The Maori version has to be given preference.

So Maori retained Tino Rangatiratanga of New Zealand and preserved full authority over its Taonga.  Subsequent acts of confiscation were clearly in breach of this.

In a civilized society this should be acknowledged and the Treaty should be given full force.  The Treaty settlements have been for extremely modest amounts given the size of the loss Maori have suffered.  On Waitangi day this should be reflected on and respected.

147 comments on “Some thoughts on Waitangi Day”

  1. Sosoo 1

    The treaty is largely pointless – an antiquated document being asked to bear a weight it was never intended to bear. Having said that, it doesn’t require much imagination to see that according to generally accepted principles of justice Maori have good claims against the Crown for past crimes committed by the latter, and that there are good reasons to promote the Maori language, Maori broadcasting, etc.

    On the other hand, Waitangi day has its own charm. Instead of American style puffery our national day is more of an “Airing of the Grievances” where everyone complains about their lot. Good times.

    • Meg 1.1

      At last, someone on this site who sees the treaty for what it is.

      • RedBaronCV 1.1.1

        So the British Crown fraudulently signed documents. How fascinating! It can’t do that under it’s own rules but if it somehow manged to do so then -right back at you – unless you’re Tangata Whenua then you are an illegal immigrant. I’m sure somebody will lend you a waka so that you can enjoy Tony Abbott’s hospitality if you make it that far. You can’t validate only the bits that suit you.

        • Meg 1.1.1.1

          Yawn, anyone here has the right to be. We are all descendants of immigrants, Maori included.

          • framu 1.1.1.1.1

            “We are all descendants of immigrants, Maori included.”

            which is utterly irrelevant

            how maori got here matters not on iota to the fact the british crown signed an agreement with them

            • Meg 1.1.1.1.1.1

              Actually I think you will find it is a very important fact that is ignored.

              • bad12

                Explain this stupid comment Meg, it is simply ‘noise’ without clarification…

                • Meg

                  If we are all descended from immigrants then no one has special claims, nor can this nonsense of first people hold water. But this fact is ignored.

                  Are you so thick you have to be spoon fed?

                  • karol

                    First peoples are recognised by the UN and other organisations determining international law. They have priority as being the first people in their area.

                    They were recognised under British law in Cook’s time – such that the whole court decision around the Terra Nullus fallacy re-Aussie, resulted in the recognition of the land rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait people. It also also the reason why the Brits required a treaty with Maori, because they could not, under their own law, just set up government here …. and from that all the problems with the Treay and its observance flow.

                    If the first inhabitants have no rights over their lands any more than later immigrants…. well, who has rights to any land? free for all ensues.

                    • Paul

                      Wasting your time Karol.
                      Meg has been looking to derail this debate for 24 hours now.

                    • Meg

                      They were not the first here, and again let’s not pretend the Brits were not going to just take over.

                      Regardless of all the history, timid the 21st century and we are ALL New Zealanders (bingo tick and proud of it) and this separatist carry on needs to be put behind us. One nation, one law for ALL.

                    • weka

                      “and again let’s not pretend the Brits were not going to just take over.”

                      Which just takes us back to the argument yesterday of might is right. You seem to be arguing that the person with the biggest stick wins. So I ask you again, who is the next legitimate owner of NZ? And will you stand aside and quietly let the next takeover happen?

                      oh that’s right, you are a lifelong Labour voter, so we know part of the answer to that already. Just as long as the new owners are someone who you approve of and who presumably give you privileges.

                    • karol

                      Citations please, Meg, re who were the first inhabitants of these isles, if not Maori?

                    • Bill

                      we are ALL New Zealanders

                      @ meg – I’m not. And neither are thousands and thousands of other people who will live their lives out here.

                    • weka

                      “Citations please, Meg, re who were the first inhabitants of these isles, if not Maori?”

                      Arrrggggg… someone had to ask 😉

                  • bad12

                    Interesting, yes please spoon feed me the PROOF of Maori breaching the Treaty of Waitangi and while your at spoon feed me the proof that Maori are not the 1st people of Aotearoa,

                    Psst was there really a race of red haired white people here befor Maori, Lolz, Meg, we all are definitely immigrants, BUT, there is one thing Maori have that NO other immigrants have, it’s called the Treaty of Waitangi,

                    A Treaty Meg is simply a ‘Contract’, in the case of most contracts they usually specify a time frame for that specific contracts brevity or length of time it will be in force,

                    In the case of the Contract which is the Treaty of Waitangi there is no clause which says it will not have force forever, so, it remains a binding contract between the Crown and Maori…

                    • Meg

                      Unless a law is passed dumping it and resigning it to the past.

                      All contracts expire and this one is well past it’s use by date.

                    • bad12

                      Pssst, Meg, this is what my Collins English Dictionary says about ‘Treaty’, ”a formal agreement or contract between two or more states,

                      Shall i keep on with the definition for educative purposes or is your view of the Treaty of Waitangi gained from that notable branch of intellectualism ”you thunk it therefor it is”….

                    • Meg

                      Are you saying that it is impossible to get out of a contract? Really?

                    • srylands

                      “so, it remains a binding contract between the Crown and Maori…”

                      I agree that the Treaty is important. However as you are so fond of pointing out in relation to trade deals, Parliament is sovereign. The Parliament could enact to dissolve the treaty tomorrow. Just like a future Government could enact to withdraw from the TPP. There is no difference.

                      More fundamentally it does not matter much who was here first. Asian immigrants will become more numerous and influential over the next 50 years and NZ will be a very different place as a result. Economic rationalism, education, and free trade will shape the country much more than the treaty, or Maori.

                      Ultimately, New Zealand will just be one big happy place, with a population of 20 million, an Asian predominance and the treaty will increasingly be a historical artefact, albeit and important one. The average Chinese up and comer doesn’t pay much attention to the treaty, and they will rule in future, together with the market.

                    • mickysavage

                      Hey Meg mind if I take your car? After we are all immigrants therefore none of us should have any property rights.

                    • bad12

                      The spurious bullshit of an airhead is the total content of your latest comment Meg….

                    • Meg

                      Hey Mickey, mind living in the 21st century? Thanks.

                    • bad12

                      Exactly Meg, the Treaty of Waitangi is a binding treaty that is set to run it’s course at the same time as infinity is reached,

                      There is no out-clause and i would suggest that befor any government could pass Legislation that cancelled the Treaty of Waitangi the Parliament would burn…

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      😆 yes, let’s all adopt 21stC standards and turn our backs on Meg’s imperialist bigotry.

                    • Meg

                      Any government that put the treaty to bed for good would have a massive amount of support from kiwis.

                      Yes there would be a few who cannot move out of the past, but they would soon be history too.

                    • srylands

                      “There is no out-clause and i would suggest that befor any government could pass Legislation that cancelled the Treaty of Waitangi the Parliament would burn…”

                      That is just dramatic nonsense from a smoker.

                      In 50 years New Zealand will be a very different place. There will probably be no need to abolish the Treaty, but as globalisation and free trade shape New Zealand as Asian immigration increases, do you really think the ttreaty will retain its current centrality? I encourage you Bad12 to get out and think laterally. Your heart supports freedom even if you have trouble overcoming your short horizons. I still maintain that within your lifetime – perhaps even in 2017 – you will be voting ACT. That just shows what is possible.

                      Kia ora.

                    • bad12

                      Yawn Meg, you provide proof of nothing just a continual fucking wingnuts whine of the most boring kind,

                      Please choke upon your own bullshit, time to gt ready for the Waitangi celebration down at the local school, complete with bands, should be a good one and a far better use of my time than reading Meg’s drivel…

                    • bad12

                      Fuck off SSLands, your elongated drivel is as numb as it is dumb and you should be instead of lecturing me, proposing to the equally dead in the head Meg so you can set about breeding your superior race,(crippled both emotionally and physically inbreds),

                      Unlike you SSLands, a slave to His masters for life i am free right now, voting for the dead ACT Party,(in the same state as your inner cranium), could never make me any freer than i am ,

                      Kihi toku tiro SSLands, whangu upoko…

                    • weka

                      “More fundamentally it does not matter much who was here first. Asian immigrants will become more numerous and influential over the next 50 years and NZ will be a very different place as a result. Economic rationalism, education, and free trade will shape the country much more than the treaty, or Maori.”

                      Actually I think you will find that within 50 years the population in NZ will be predominantly Polynesian. That’s from stats on birth, death and reproduction rates and patterns in NZ. I agree that Asian cultures will have influence here too, but to suggest that the Treaty or Māori will be insignificant is just daft.

                    • Meg

                      Off you trot bad, go have fun. Take an umbrella, the weather is not that great out.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      In 50 years New Zealand will be a very different place.

                      Yes it will; only a few people will have regular access to liquid fuels, and air travel will be a luxury that only the elites can afford. We will also be facing major climate change stressors on a monthly basis.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Any government that put the treaty to bed for good would have a massive amount of support from kiwis.

                      LOL

              • framu

                your mixing history and a legal document up

                if i turn up at your house, make a little camp in the back yard and we reach an agreement that its cool for me to stay as long as i respect your stuff does it matter if anyone was there before you or where you come from?

                it doesnt

  2. Will@Welly 2

    Sir, you are a champion. That photo, of Norman Kirk and the young Maori boy, who has since been identified, but whose name alludes me, is one for the generations.

    What I have found disturbing today though, is to learn that John Key led a prayer on the Marae this morning. No problem about the leader of the nation offering a prayer, but John Key is an atheist. That is on public record.
    He is leading a prayer to “God”, but he doesn’t believe in one.
    Other members of different faiths going into different religious “houses” and offering prayers is different as they “come” with their own faith and customs, but they also come offering respect and inturn are offered mutual respect and tolerance, and religious understanding.
    John Key cannot offer anything, because he doesn’t believe in anything. By doing what he has done, leading a prayer – a worship to God – he proves to be what he is – a f**ken hypocrite.

    Disclaimer: Will@Welly is not overtly religious, just hates f**ken hypocrites and liars.

    • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 2.1

      I bet he sings the national anthem as well, addressing God directly, what a hypocrite.

      Hell, I bet he even wishes people Merry Christmas! The hypocrisy of the man!

    • MaxFletcher 2.2

      It’s not all that bad considering that all MP’s also start the house with a prayer to god.Not to mention an atheist can respect believe without being a believer

      • Will@Welly 2.2.1

        Yes, but Key led the prayer – that means he is putting himself at the front, leading.
        You can’t lead, if you don’t believe.
        If you lead, without believing, then you’re either a hypocrite or a liar.

    • martin 2.3

      Key does not even reach the top of Big Norm’s shoe soles!
      I remember Norm and standing in the grounds of parliament with many genuinely upset adults when he was carried down the steps. We stood in the rain as the hearse went past after his funeral.

      If Key died before November I can bet there would not be the out pouring of grief like what I saw back in ’74.

      Come back Norm!

      • Will@Welly 2.3.1

        It’s even sad that Key gets to sit in the same Parliament as “big Norm” did. He’d wipe him off the floor before he even opened his mouth. Norm was a man you respected.

        I can remember where I was when I heard the news “big Norm” had died. Like you, and so many others, I stood in the rain, for a glimpse as this man passed by. No words were spoken, just prayers.

        Down south, in Waimate, is his grave. Perhaps the time has come for us, this nation, to revisit it.
        Had he lived, his legacy would have been immense. Instead the media played the nation with a tyrant and a buffoon called Muldoon.

  3. Pasupial 3

    I’d say that the treaty would never have happened if not for the preceding 1835 Declaration of Independence (He Wakaputanga o te Rangatiratanga). Which being recognised by Busby in an official capacity (and hence the crown) necessitated a further document to assist the Wakefield landgrab.

    “It is notable that the Treaty of Waitangi was made between the British Crown and “the chiefs of the United Tribes of New Zealand” in recognition of their independent sovereignty which continued after 1840″
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_Independence_of_New_Zealand

  4. Will@Welly 4

    We all know the Pakeha version is a fraud, but the “right” love it, and roll it out time and again.
    I just wish some of the Government’s subsides were “full and final”, but watch John Key et al roll them out everytime some multi-national wants a handout.

  5. RedBaronCV 5

    No treaty is pointless nor has an expiry date that suits only one party. So what if the language is antiquated, (it usually is) the concepts are not.

    There are treaties in Europe that are still “current” in that they rule the conduct of both parties and any current negotiations taking place. The treaty of Utrecht 1713 that handed Gibralter to Britain , the treaty of Windsor 1386 between Portugal and England making them allies

    And all of us should be overwhelmingly proud that a treaty was signed and that there was not a “clearance” as so often happened.
    And yes, I do enjoy the Waitangi Day discussions.

  6. Saarbo 6

    Thanks Micky.

    Apparently Nga Puhi are asking for a $600m cash settlement (according to a Patrick Gower tweet a few moments ago). This to me still sounds too low. Land is what was confiscated from maori, not a lot of land can be purchased with the cash settlements been settled and offered by the crown, in my view. I can’t help but feel that maori appear to being ripped off, again.

    Disclaimer: I am not of Maori descent…although my 2 children are.

    • mickysavage 6.1

      The settlements are usually at the rate of about 3% of the value of what has been lost. Maori deserve our gratitude and not our ridicule.

      Hone Harawira has an interesting column in this morning’s herald where he is saying the same thing as you Saarbo.

      His article includes this:

      In the 1877 case of Wi Parata versus the Bishop of Wellington, Chief Justice Prendergast said that because the Treaty of Waitangi had been signed “between a civilised nation and a group of savages” and had no formal status in domestic law, it was essentially “null and void”.

      Outrageous though that may sound, the reality is that Treaty settlements are being signed off for less than 3 per cent of their value, and the phrase “null and void” is simply being replaced by another … “full and final”.

      And as fate would have it, Ngapuhi’s place in the whole Treaty saga is about to come full circle for, just as Ngapuhi was the birthplace of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, so too does Ngapuhi provide the basis for our future understanding of Te Tiriti.

      The Government already has “full and final” deals with most other iwi, and in particular the big players like Tainui, Ngai Tahu and Ngati Porou, but they can’t effectively claim to have settled the Treaty until they can bring the biggest tribe in the country to the table.

      Once Ngapuhi’s signature is on the Deed of Settlement, the Crown will have achieved “full and final” settlement of all major iwi claims, at which point the Treaty will have finally achieved the status conferred upon it by Chief Justice Prendergast in 1877 … it will to all intents and purposes finally be “null and void”.

      And I doubt that any of our tupuna who signed Te Tiriti o Waitangi back in 1840 would have even contemplated let alone agreed to either scenario.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=11197284

      • marty mars 6.1.1

        Great article by Hone – I think the following excerpt is very important and must always be remembered.

        But, even in the best of times, any honest Maori would admit that the Treaty settlement process allows for only one real winner – the Crown.

        Government alone laid down the parameters of the debate, set up the Waitangi Tribunal to hear claims, defined the powers of the tribunal, decides who can sit on the tribunal, specified the terms of the hearings process, says which lands are available for claim and which ones aren't, set a 3 per cent ceiling on all claims, outlined the requirements claimants must meet before negotiations start, included a "full and final" clause in all settlements with no right of appeal, and established a process that pitted hapu and iwi against one another, creating disputes that may take generations to resolve.

        It is not a level playing field and the dice is stacked (to mix the metaphors up a bit) – tangata whenua continue to work in good faith – even though the likely result is at best a pittance.

        [Fixed – MS]

    • RedBaronCV 6.2

      Only $600m? Nowhere near enough I’d have thought. Nga Puhi are a major tribe covering a lot of land around the Bay of Islands and other Northland land hot spots – it wouldn’t go far if they wanted to buy bits of it back. Is that all the tribe or just some sub tribes? Is it a result of the early colonisation fragmenting the tribal structures?
      Disclaimer. Grandmother had some action in the Maori Land Courts over Maori land interests in the area.

  7. Tiger Mountain 7

    Pity Big Norm had not lived longer. One can imagine the type of place this country might have been.

    Just as this atheist is happy to take Xmas day and Easter breaks so are the dark kiwis and ‘naki men’ to have Waitangi day off. The difference is while the holidays in name of ancient christian writings don’t have a significant real world effect these days apart from boxing day sales, our post colonial fall out is still most trenchant.

    What the racist and the hordes of just lazy thinking kiwis miss is that how can we be one nation or people when particular sections of us are worse off in every way imaginable. Would you put up with one member of your family hungry, ill, unhappy, no shoes while the rest of the kids have ipads and hair straighteners and gleaming smiles?

    A promise was made to Māori in 1840. But when the numbers of British imperialists were sufficient several decades on, a brutal land grab was unleashed. History of indigenous societies the world over show the inevitable outcome. Until justice is done and we are damn near the top of most equal societies in all respects Waitangi day will continue to serve as a call to action.

  8. BM 8

    The treaty was between Maori and the representatives of the British crown

    After we became the Dominion of New Zealand in 1907 the treaty became null and void.

    Dominion day is what we should be celebrating as a nation not this ridiculous treaty nonsense.

    • mickysavage 8.1

      Why is that BM? If there was a transfer from one “Crown” to another “Crown” then the second entity took all the assets as well as the liabilities.

      • BM 8.1.1

        Was the treaty even given a thought or was it considered no longer needed?

        In reality the treaty was nothing more than just a document to get the ball rolling and get every one agreeing to some basic principles.

        Once we became our own country it wasn’t needed anymore and therefore confined to the dust bin of history

        • mickysavage 8.1.1.1

          What about article II BM, the one that promised Maori tino rangatiratanga (full authority) over taonga (precious things). Surely that means something.

          The landed gentry in the UK have their property rights respected and protected even though these rights are centuries old. Why shouldn’t Iwi enjoy the same protection?

          • BM 8.1.1.1.1

            Are New Zealanders still British subjects, according to this we are not.

            New Zealand no longer defined the status of British subject when the Citizenship Act 1977 replaced the British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act 1948 on 1 January 1978. However, s. 2 (Interpretation) of the Act still contains a reference in the definition of Alien to “…Commonwealth citizen (British subject)…”

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_subject

            One of the reasons the Maori signed the treaty was because they got to be British citizens and got all the good stuff that went along with it, if we’re no longer British citizens how can the treaty still be valid?.

            • mickysavage 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Straw man argument. The state promised Iwi preservation of certain rights. If the state has changed the new state inherited the old state’s obligations, ergo Treaty rights continue. You might want to tell National of your theory BM because even they believe that compensation for breaches of the treaty are appropriate.

            • RedBaronCV 8.1.1.1.1.2

              Reversing that argument on you BM you are now an illegal immigrant and will need to apply to your local iwi to see if you can stay.

              Perhaps they will run you out of town.

              Actually any negating of the Treaty leaves all people other than Tangata Whenua as illegal immigrants both here and in Australia.

              • BM

                I’m Tangata whenua bro, I get to stay.

                Seriously though no ones leaving or will leave, still doesn’t change the fact that the treaty has got more value as fish and chip paper than a legal document.

            • Anne 8.1.1.1.1.3

              Wow BM. You are a fountain of knowledge. Were you there? Is that how you know why the Maaaris signed the Treaty?

        • Pascal's bookie 8.1.1.2

          Open a paper BM, opoint your browser at any NZ news site. It’s not in the dustbin you fucking nonce.

          You might want it to be there, but hardly anyone agrees with you. Not lawyers, not citizens, not judges nor politicians. Fact is, it’s right there in the heart of our constitutional framework.

    • karol 8.2

      Yes – just like the whole legacy of British law was suddenly wiped from our country’s books.

    • RedBaronCV 8.3

      Mouth open. You really don’t know much do you?

      The Dominion of New Zealand would have suceeded the British crown under the Treaty as the Dominion status was between the New Zealand people and the British Crown.
      It’s pretty standard and makes for such interesting things as the French President being the co-prince of Andorra a status acquired under the Treaty of Utrecht by the French crown and suceeded to by succesive heads of the French state.

    • Pascal's bookie 8.4

      Take out any piece of NZ cash money you like and have a looksie at the faces on it. The one with the spiky hat, who’s that?

    • Why get so bothered BM – you get a day off, you can call it Bob Marley’s birthday and ignore it. There are a million things you could do instead of working yourself up. Why not take the time to write up/investigate/understand your family tree/history for instance – as you have said (like meg last night) that you have some whakapapa, This could be good for you, your family and the future and it may show some insights into where this country is now and what we can do about it. Now that would be a post i’d enjoy reading from you instead of these silly wee insulting ones you are chucking out today. Go on do it – I dare you!

  9. Rosie 9

    Good explanation of the history and implementation of Te Tiriti Mickey. Hopefully Crazy Lady Meg has a read, a cup of tea and a sit down, and a bit of a think.

    • Meg 9.1

      It was just more white man guilt nonsense. But it is to be expected on this day.

      While I am no John Key supporter I would love it if he settled with ngapuhi, then shifted nz into a republic. Imagine that, no more treaty, everyone an equal citizen, no one culture being able to claim special treatment. Fantastic.

      • karol 9.1.1

        It’ll be a great day when the default position is no longer special treatment for Pakeha – so common some people don’t even notice.

      • framu 9.1.2

        ” then shifted nz into a republic”

        which would automatically take up all exisitng treaties and laws untill a new constitution could be written – and guess what would be in the mix there

        well done – you really think this stuff through dont you – gold star

      • Chrissy 9.1.3

        Meg, tell us about the ‘special treatment’ that you think Maori receive?

  10. Tinfoilhat 10

    Ngapuhi should walk away from the negotiating table until there is some serious moves to give them back their land and fishing resources.

  11. mikesh 11

    If New Zealand became a republic the treaty would presumably be no longer valid. However, in formulating a constitution at that point, we would have to consider how much weight should be given to the ideas encapsulated in the treaty, but the decision arrived at would depend, I think, on the situation at the time rather than historical considerations.

    • weka 11.1

      Why would it no longer be valid?

    • RedBaronCV 11.2

      No the Republic just becomes the sucessor state to all treaties. Think a bit harder – if treaties became invalid then all free trade agreements etc etc would also become invalid.

      • mikesh 11.2.1

        The treaty is not with the state but with the crown, which was the head of state before the move to a republic. After the change the crown would have no further say.

        Trade and other agreements with other countries would be a different kettle of fish altogether.

        • RedBaronCV 11.2.1.1

          Er no. The french president of a republic is also a prince of Andorra -clear head of state successor rights when France changed from monarchy to Republic

        • McFlock 11.2.1.2

          the treaty is with the crown, but becoming a republic means we take all the rights and responsibilities of the crown. Including the treaty.

          • mikesh 11.2.1.2.1

            The crown is, in theory, the enforcer of the treaty. In the event of the crown’s departure the question of whether a treaty forged 170+ years ago, under different circumstances, should remain in force would become something of a moot point. At any rate it would be an internal matter which didn’t involve other countries.

  12. greywarbler 12

    What do you think of Radionz interviewing this Ngai Tahu chap who has lived in the USA since a child and is going on about the US anti-missile defence needs.? He has achieved something in the SuperBowl and apparently this gives him the opening to come and spoil our Waitangi Day commemorations with talk about war, attacks etc.

    Up for complaints about this disgrace in their choice of speakers and topic. This is our day. If he wanted to talk about us and the difference that USA to us but I’m just infuriated at this anti-missile talk, that he is selling the USA Defence ideas to us on our day of peace and friendship and community.

    Radionz Waitangi Day special broadcast –
    10:06 Riki Ellison – Missile Defence
    Riki Ellison (Ngāi Tahu) left Christchurch as an eight-year-old to live in the US. He’s the only New Zealander to be part of a winning Super Bowl team; he won three times with the San Francisco 49ers. Today he is the founder and chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance – a non-profit organisation advocating for hi-tech missile defence systems which he says will protect the national security of the US and its allies.

    He came back in 1992 to see if he has roots, he says that feeling has never left him. And he comes over preaching USA anti-missiles need! He has ceased to have his heart here, even if there are vestiges of it left. He has been in the USA since 8 years old.

    If we are to speak to NZs who have been living overseas, please talk to someone who has positive things to say about life, without stuffing our ears with negative information.

    • weka 12.1

      I was surprised at that interview being on today but I turned it off without listening to much. The one before that with Tariana Turia was pretty interesting.

      • greywarbler 12.1.1

        weka +1

        • SHG (not Colonial Viper) 12.1.1.1

          Today he is the founder and chairman of the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance – a non-profit organisation advocating for hi-tech missile defence systems which he says will protect the national security of the US and its allies.

          When I hear “non-profit” and “defence systems” in the same sentence, all I hear is the sound of cash registers ringing.

  13. The Treaty was and is a fraud. Regardless of version or who signed it.
    There was no intention on the part of the British to honour its terms.
    The intention was to dispossess Maori and turn them into labourers.
    At the same time the British forced the Opium Wars on China.
    The Treaty cannot be honoured without meaningful Maori self-determination.
    Self-determination for Maori will be possible only when we get rid of capitalism.
    To do that Maori and non-Maori workers will have to unite to take power.
    That will allow the nationalisation of land and industry so that Maori can if they choose assert rights to the use of these resources that are adequate to meet their needs.
    Anything less is dystopia.

    • weka 13.1

      Isn’t that telling Måori how to go about their self-determination? And that in fact they can’t have any kind of self-determination until they help dismantle the West’s problems?

      • karol 13.1.1

        weka, it looks to me like a co-option of Maori struggles for the cause of western-focused socialism.

        • weka 13.1.1.1

          Indeed. It makes me uncomfortable because of that and because it renders us all victims and in a state of complete oppression until the revolution comes. Tariana Turia talked on the RNZ interview this morning about how Māori wil always hold onto their essence and that can’t be taken away from them and they will never go away (that’s me paraphrasing). That is beyond resistence and resilience and belies the Western notion that colonisation was complete (or that capitalism is all encompassing).

      • mikesh 13.1.2

        Maori can’t have self determination unless all pakeha emigrate. Which seems unlikely.

        • Bill 13.1.2.1

          That’s quite simply and obviously a false statement mikesh. It’s the top down institutions that prevent sovereignty residing in people. The mere presence of Pakeha per se has got nothing to do with any prospects for self determination.

          • mikesh 13.1.2.1.1

            The presence of pakeha has everything to with the institutions that exist, top down or otherwise.

            • Bill 13.1.2.1.1.1

              The presence of people, or more precisely, peoples’ beliefs on how things should be organised – not simply Pakeha – has everything to do with current institutions.

    • Bill 13.2

      That will allow the nationalisation of land and industry so that Maori can if they choose assert rights to the use of these resources that are adequate to meet their needs statists can impose their idea of order and install systems of command and control over resources and production

      Kinda like, there goes freedom and self determination right there.

      • mikesh 13.2.1

        Nationalization of land would be more in keeping with the Maori way. Property, as Proudhon said, is theft, and we should all perhaps be regarded as joint owners of all the land in the country. The right to the exclusive use of land would then be subject to whatever conditions we democratically decide, and would usually entail the payment to the community of some form of rent or land tax.

        The Maoris didn’t have a system of land ownership prior to the coming of the pakeha.

        • Bill 13.2.1.1

          Nationalisation is exactly giving the state control of whatever resource. And that means that whoever ascends in the government hierarchy or up through the echelons of ‘The Party’ gets to call the shots. Fuck it. We’ve been here before. Do the historical and inevitable dungeon conditions of the USSR and Eastern Europe (5/8ths of fuck all political freedom and absolutely no input to economic management adding up to no democracy) not mean a thing?

          • mikesh 13.2.1.1.1

            No I don’t think they do mean a thing. You would need to show a connection between them and us.

            • Bill 13.2.1.1.1.1

              The connection is the putting of resources into state control. The USSR is the example of what eventuates.

              • mikesh

                Perhaps that is what happened when the Russians put resources into state control. But them is them and us is us.

                • Bill

                  Jeesus wept, there is no ‘perhaps’ – it’s an inevitable result of the structures and dynamics inherent to state control of resources. It’s got nothing at all to do with nationality.

                  • Bill you seem to think that all states are oppressive.
                    The difference between the capitalist state and the workers state is the class in control. A Workers State represents the working class majority in society.
                    Stalinist Russia was not an example of a true workers state.
                    The workers were ruled over by a parasitic bureaucracy.
                    To argue that a workers state in NZ would inevitably ape Stalinist Russia is is to patronise workers as incapable of democracy.
                    This is a standard ploy by middle class reformists with a personal stake in the capitalist system who want to tell workers what to do.
                    The NZ Labour Party is a reformist party with its ideological origins in C19th Fabianism, a middle class endorsement of a progressive capitalism.
                    Today capitalism is proven to be bent on global destruction killing 200 species a day and heading for human extinction.
                    If we have any hope of surviving we have to overthrow the capitalist rulers and plan production collectively.
                    Let’s not call this collective a state, let’s call it a commune.
                    In uniting to create this commune, the indigenous peoples will play a leading role because for them, the large majority of them have nothing to lose because they face extinction before the rest of us.
                    People like Shane Jones of course, have a lot to lose. They, like all Fabians, play the Eurocentric game, that Western capitalism is still the only hope for civilisation. Fools and scoundrels!

                    • Bill

                      red rattler, it would seem that your heart is in the right place. But seriously. Put down ‘the bible’ and just think things through.

                      Just some examples. How can you condemn ‘middle class reformers’ for ‘wanting to tell workers what to do’ while simultaneously advocating that an administrative elite is established so that workers become ‘suitably’ organised and ordered? Where exactly is the democracy or the empowered worker in that scenario? Why do you assert that the USSR was not a ‘true’ workers state? Just a little thought reveals that ‘parasitic bureaucracy’ is an inevitable consequence of ‘democratic centralism’ – think it through instead of (presumably and implicitly) falling back on the lazy assertion that Stalin was a ‘bad apple’ and if only Lenin…blah te de blah, Trotsky blah, blah.

                      It was Lenin who disbanded workers councils and Trotsky is on record for reporting that the Bolshevics would have dismantled workers councils and moved to oppressive, undemocratic vertical structures in workplaces sooner than they did if it hadn’t been for continuing unrest post 1919.

                      Then I wonder at the lack of consistency in condemning the Eurocentric approach of the Fabians, while advocating for an entirely Eurocentric vanguardist workers state?

                      Finally, you wonder about what I think of states. it’s simple. All ‘power over’ must justify itself, and if it can’t then should be removed. You also appear to suggest I’m a middle class reformer with a stake in capitalism who would thwart democratic aspirations. That, if I’m reading you correctly, is just quite simply you being woefully wrong headed.

                  • mikesh

                    Russia was never really a democracy. It was initially an autocratic monarchy, and then a communist oligarchy.

                    • Bill

                      Russia was never really a democracy.

                      True. Now, if only you could recognise or understand that any centralised administration or control stands in stark opposition to democracy. Then, if you actually care about the prospects for democracy, stop advocating for scenarios that would most assuredly thwart and crush any democratic aspirations people might have.

                    • mikesh

                      Who said anything about “centralised administration and control”? I was only talking about nationalization of land and resources. But even so, a centralised control doesn’t have to be undemocratic.

  14. Stephanie Rodgers 14

    The photo of Key with Aroha Nathan is a great study in body language. Him in his totally uncharacteristic mufti, big grin on his face, in motion, her with her feet together, hands clasped. One of them doesn’t want to be there, the other is very pleased with himself.

    • karol 14.1

      Looks like Aroha is handcuffed, and Key has a gun pointed at her back – maybe I watch too many crime movies….?

      • Will@Welly 14.1.1

        Time perhaps for a Caption Contest. Can I start it off:
        “Come with me, little girl, or I’ll kick your family out of their house, and Paula will cut the benefit.”

  15. Olwyn 15

    As you point out Mickey, Aroha now lives in Australia. We do not know where the rest of the so-called “underclass” of McGehan Close are; people who in for the most part worked in modest jobs and took umbrage at that description. McGehan Close itself has since been drawn into the million-dollar-property aeroplane game. That is how Key deals with the underclass: deem anyone who stands in the way of quick profits a member of it, and shove them to one side. We are on the verge of signing yet another treaty, the TTP, whose defenders claim will also respect our sovereignty. And interestingly, the computer’s spell-check now accepts “underclass” as a single word. It has become part of the accepted lexicon.

    • just saying 15.1

      …And interestingly, the computer’s spell-check now accepts “underclass” as a single word.

      How depressing is that?

      We need strong flax-roots movements. Gotta do it somehow.

    • adam 15.2

      Funny how quick one group in society is so quick to dismiss one treaty – Waitangi, then lambaste all to sundry for not accepting another treaty TTP. Same mob even – does that mean the right wing in this country only follow the rule of law when it suits them? Do we live now in a situation, were governments have got so use to lying to the population they can do anything they want?

      Many have said that it’s socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor – That misses the point, the rich can do as they please because liberalism protects them from any consequences. Waitangi day does a good job of proving that. Imagine for one second if your white – someone (the state) came along and took your grandparents house and all their land – and then your great great grandkids might get into court to put their case forward about it. That would make you Maori, or close to it in the grievances area. Winston is right that there is an industry, but one born of the fact the state and its flunkies are slow, and obtuse in there dealing with these issues.

      Personally, I’m sick to death of reactionaries saying we should all just get along, were all one nation, or, see Maori got all these benefits from colonization. Also I’m sick of the double standard of the use of contracts (liberalism at its core) to govern commerce and government on one hand. Then the quick double speak of wanting to dismiss one contract The Treaty of Waitangi on the other. Time to see our nation as less than perfect – and our politicians as lying opportunistic scum bags.

      • greywarbler 15.2.1

        I’ll just mention contra proferentem effects on law here. It means that when there is a power imbalance between knowledgable entity and naive, simple, smaller or weaker then in interpretation the c.p. effects are looked at, as well as the legal and language translations when Maori and the Treaty are being considered.

        Links –
        http://www.legalservicesindia.com/article/article/contra-proferentem-my-piece-of-cake-1485-1.html

        http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/oi/authority.20110803095635656
        Oxford Reference
        Quick Reference
        A rule of legal interpretation primarily applying to documents. If any doubt or ambiguity arises in the interpretation of a document, the rule requires that the doubt or ambiguity should be resolved against the party who drafted it. For instance, a defendant who claims that a clause in a contract that he drafted exempts him from liability can expect that any ambiguity in the terms of the clause will be resolved against him. The expression derives from the Latin: verba chartarum fortuis accipiuntur contra proferentum, the words of a contract are construed more strictly against the person proclaiming them.

        Also Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unjust_enrichment
        Unjust enrichment
        From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
        In law, unjust enrichment is where one person is unjustly or by chance enriched at the expense of another, and an obligation to make restitution arises, regardless of liability for wrongdoing.[1] A common example is when a party contracts to provide a service, but the contract is terminated prematurely due to a breach, and the contractor unjustly receives no compensation for partial services rendered.

        The concept of unjust enrichment is based upon the Roman legal maxim “no one should be benefited at another’s expense” (nemo locupletari potest aliena iactura or nemo locupletari debet cum aliena iactura).

  16. Roflcopter 16

    Mickey, the Maori version of the treaty was translated from the English version.

    • BM 16.1

      And the English transcribed the Maori language.

      • Will@Welly 16.1.1

        El prat – my understanding Samuel Marsden and 3 paramount chiefs worked on the treaty. It wasn’t the “English” as such, but a missionary. That wasn’t unusal in those days, often missionaries were the primary contact for a lot of indigenous peoples.
        Still, el prat, as a rabid Nat. supporter, why let facts or knowledge get in the way of a “good” story?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 16.1.2

        BM, since you’re so knowledgeable, can you tell me – in international treaty law, which version takes preference where there is a dispute over interpretation?

        What’s that? Speak up man, don’t mumble!

  17. Ron 17

    Can anyone comment please on ratification of the Treaty. As I understood it International Convention requires all such treaties to be ratified usually by presenting a bill into their Parliament to ratify such treaty into law.
    I am not aware that Britain ever did this with Waitangi Treaty.
    Of course NZ subsequently passed legislation but not sure that could be considered as ratification.
    Any thoughts please?

  18. greywarbler 18

    This chap was interesting and presented his points well so gave some different to what else I have heard.
    Radionz http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/waitangiday
    Audio from Thursday 6 February 2014
    Manuka Henare – Declaration of Independence ( 20′ 22″ )

    09:08 Manuka Henare (Ngapuhi, Te Aupouri, Te Rarawa, Ngati Kuri) discusses the
    1835 Ngapuhi-led Declaration of Independence (He Whakaputanga o te Rangatiratanga o Nu Tireni) – a declaration of sovereignty that underpins Ngapuhi’s ongoing claim before the Waitangi Tribunal. Ngapuhi stand firm on the argument that the Treaty of Waitangi did not revoke the declaration, but confirmed it. Manuka Henare is an expert witness before the Waitangi Tribunal Hearing Wai 1040 Paparahi o te Raki (Ngapuhi-Northland Enquiry), and an Associate Professor of Maori Business Development at the University of Auckland Business School.

  19. Flip 19

    For arguments sake lets say Maori achieve ‘self-determination’ and gain nationhood/independence. Not sure what it is they want? What does that look like and how would it work in practice? Has anyone done work on this? Does anyone have any clue where this would go? Or is it an idealised aspiration that gives people a reason to complain? Being the devil’s advocate.

    • Bill 19.1

      Did give it some thought a while back. Can’t remember ever being able to figure out how two ‘states’ could functionally operate in the same territorial area. Not saying there isn’t a workable scenario – just that I couldn’t figure one out.

      Of course, if there was no state at all and full self determination for all…. 😉

      • karol 19.1.1

        Nationhood and statehood are not the same thing. The state is a governance thing. Nation is the people.

        In the US tribal groups have independent nation status.

        Navajo Nation:

        The United States still asserts plenary power to require the Navajo Nation to submit all proposed laws to the United States Secretary of the Interior for Secretarial Review, through the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). Most conflicts and controversies between the federal government and the Nation are settled by negotiation and by political agreements. Laws of the Navajo Nation are currently codified in the Navajo Nation Code.

        • Bill 19.1.1.1

          Yeah – which is partly why I put ‘state’ in parenthesis. I merely wanted to indicate the existence of two legal or generally recognised entities. Anyway, I can’t see how self determination can be said to occur without control of resources and their use….implying some form of state, if we are going to stick to an idea of sovereignty being something that can be exercised over people rather than by people.

        • Flip 19.1.1.2

          “Nationhood and statehood are not the same thing…..”

          Good point.

          Are the aims of Maori nationhood as in your Navajo example?

          Excuse my ignorance. I’d be interested in some informed post on what Maori see as a good working state.

  20. Cleo George 20

    Waitangi Day is the MOST important day for all New Zealanders to reflect and celebrate the birth of a Nation brought about wisely for a fair partnership between the natives and the settlers.
    What is TRUE is that the Maori as a race have had a poor deal in many aspects such as their lands, health, education, economic and social equity. The government, the Iwi and all of us should strive to help improve Maori statistics in education, income, health, jobs etc come close to that of the rest of the country. If not, we have dishonoured the treaty and failed as a Nation.
    Of course, the uplifting of the rest of the less privileged too should proceed simultaneously irrespective of ethnic background.

  21. Tanz 21

    I am not an immiigrant, but a fifth generation New Zealander.
    The settlement process is now a gravy train all about guilt and apeasement.
    Everyone in NZ has equal opportunities, and if anything, Pakehas are now frowned upon.
    we are heading towards different rules for different races.

    • framu 21.1

      “I am not an immiigrant, but a fifth generation New Zealander.”

      me too – and i feel the opposite

      -i dont feel guilt – but i recognise that maori have lost out massively via the crown not playing ball
      -i dont feel frowned upon – because i dont let someone elses opinion create my own self image
      -i dont see the treaty process as a gravy train – because i know that what is given back is a tiny % of what was taken
      -i dont feel threatened by maori or the treaty – because despite everyone human failings i know from history that maori arent going to rip up all the land deeds, block the beaches and kick everyone out of the national parks
      -i dont feel that we are heading for separate rules – because i see this issue as one of helping to get a generationally disadvantaged group back to an even level with the bulk of society via giving them back a tiny bit to help with the subsequent generational change that is required to enable proper self determination
      -im not concerned that things dont seem to be changing that fast – because a generational fuck up takes generations to fix

      sure mistakes get made, dodgy stuff happens with some of the money and theres hot heads around who inflame things – but not for a second to a think that maori have any monopoly on that sort of thing

      • Cleo George 21.1.1

        Good points. I agree. (except the swear words!)

        • framu 21.1.1.1

          you know – it took me a good read to spot them :-) – perhaps im just a bit to comfortable with my sailor talk

          edit “but not for a second to a think” – that should be “DO i think”

  22. Tanz 22

    My forebears are from the USSR and the USA, but have been in NZ for many decades. How does this make us immigrants? We are all New Zealanders.

    • karol 22.1

      Bingo!

    • Meg 22.2

      Correct. But do not expect acceptance for that on here.

      Expect punishment for not following blindly.

      [lprent: Expect to arouse suspicion from the moderators if you look like you’re trying to start a flamewar. Trying to act the victim when you’re pulled up on doing so is usually a pretty good indicator that you are a worthless troll.

      If you want to be taken seriously by me you have to offer argument that goes beyond the slogans that any person with 3rd stage syphilis and rotted brain could repeat. Indeed that any parrot with arseholes for parents could do. So far you’re not getting too far past that rotted brain state in my opinion.

      BTW: Read the policy about what I feel about trolls with syphilis and bad hygienic habits during your rapes self-proclaimed consensual sex. To demonstrate that you aren’t one, you have to demonstrate some actual thought. Otherwise I might just have a suspicion that you’re merely trying wind people up for no nett contribution to this debate ]

  23. greywarbler 23

    Wayne Mapp was on Radionz in afternoon, I think being replayed from original lecture. Seemed to be around what will NZ be in 2040? He emphasised how prcentages are changing lifting Asian, Maori have remained static, and Pacific gradually rising.

    May have to think more multiculturally,. Maori have obtained assured positions so they are legally assured of being an advisory groupt to Auckland CC. and others? Population of Asians will grow, pakeha remain about 43%.

    Trading – Maori business in dairy is big enough to set up own brand and give Fonterra to whom they are big suppliers, a run for their money. Maori through Sealord have already Asian relationships with Japanese.
    Just some of what was said.

    • Wayne 23.1

      Greywarbler,

      Thank you for noting this. I was intending the speech, which is also written, to be my Waitangi statement, rather than contributing to a blog.

      You will note that I said the treaty relationship was secure, notwithstanding future population changes.

      I also said that Maori seats, or a Maori Statutory Committee as in Auckland should be a mandatory requirement for all Local Authorities.

      I also noted that the relationship with Asia was a particular opportunity for Maori. Miraka, a Maori owned milk processing business near Taupo, has entered into a joint venture with Shanghai Pengxin, the purchasers of the Crafar farms to process their milk. Miraka is about 2 years old, but I believe will become a big player in the milk industry.

      • greywarbler 23.1.1

        Wayne
        I found your speech very interesting and had to make some notes about it for here.

        I had to do them in a hurry so I couldn’t make them as full, and check them for correctness, as I would have liked. So thank you for filling the gaps, ensuring the right interpretation, and adding more important details.

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    There are three political dimensions to the budget’s star “children in hardship” item. One is John Key’s ownership. That fits his protestations of concern about disadvantaged children — though action has been slow coming. He made his pile in… ...
    Colin JamesBy Colin James
    15 hours ago
  • Thoughts on budget 2015
    There’s a Herald summary here. I’ve been saying for a while that ‘neoliberalism’ – ie a belief in the efficacy of free markets, the distortionary evil of taxes and benefits and the minimalisation of the state – is dead. There… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    15 hours ago
  • What if your MP was decided on the flip of a coin?
    The provincial election in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island finally came to an end a couple of days ago when its last MLA was declared elected following a judicial recount.(What - you didn't know that Prince Edward Island… ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    22 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Budget 2015
    From the outset, the slogan for yesterday’s Budget – “The Plan Is Working” – begged to be mocked. There’s actually a plan for the national economy? Who knew? And its been working for whom, exactly? Not for families in poverty,… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific
    Speech – New Zealand Government I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak at this International Conference on the Future of Asia.22 May 2015 Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific (speech delivered to 2015 Nikkei Forum, Tokyo,… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    23 hours ago
  • Budget 2015: Media releases and tertiary education coverage
    We will update this page over the next few days with media releases and news stories on Budget 2015 and its effect on tertiary education and on employment. Radio NZ: Govt tightens education purse strings The Government is expecting fewer… ...
    1 day ago
  • Helping Our Heritage Come Alive – Mt Eden Rd
    This is an image from Mark Bishop. Here are the previous posts: Queen and Wellesley, Newton Rd, Kingsland These images were developed by merging together various historic black and white photographs (all from the “Sir George Grey Special Collection” –… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015 shows no plans for public sector wages
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says this budget does not address the wage rises needed across the public sector. ...
    1 day ago
  • Don’t expect to see chemical safety data sheets in restaurants
    I keep coming across this very naive form of chemophobic scare-mongering – the use of safety data sheets to frighten consumers about trace chemicals in their environment, food and drink. Here is an example anti-fluoridation propagandists continually use – safety data… ...
    1 day ago
  • World News Brief, Thursday May 21
    PunditBy Daily Digest
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Mediaworks: The only horizon they see
    When it emerged last month that Campbell Live was facing the axe, I ventured that Mediaworks had become far more Julie Christie's company than it was John Campbell's. And I think that's the reality behind the news that Campbell Live… ...
    1 day ago
  • Andrew’s little Poem
    by Don Franks Twas the night before Budget When just for a change Andrew Little’s thought’s did more widely range Labour’s leader cast round in his mind for an angle On which a publicity moment might dangle Some little device… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • One good thing
    Today's budget is a dismal affair, as the government shuffles money around and announces new spending while conveniently forgetting to mention that its a sub-inflation rise and that health and education are going backwards - as they have every year… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Budget tougher for students – NZUSA and TEU media release
    Lowering the annual fee increases for students from 4 percent to 3 percent means universities, polytechnics and wānanga will have less money, say national student and staff unions NZUSA and TEU. Slightly slower fee rises are no good if the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Lala-land forecasts on housing investment
    Some of the forecasts in the Budget beggar belief, and when they almost inevitably turn out wrong they spell disaster for New Zealand families. Here’s the clearest example. In the last year, investment in residential property ballooned by 16%. In… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Cynical bribery on the horizon
    Bill English has said time and again that new spending initiatives of around $1 billion each year are the responsible thing to do, and are the new normal. And, in the next two years, he is as good as… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Share of the economy going to workers continues to fall
    The BEFU documents today have unwelcome news for workers. Over the next four years, the share of the economy that ends up in the hands of workers through their wages will fall by around 1.3%. That 1.3% of GDP,… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Bill English’s Budget illustrates complexity in welfare system
    Budget 2015 has been touted as a package for the poor. And it certainly delivers them more money. However, it gives with one hand and takes away with the other, revealing the confusing and perverse nature of our welfare system.… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Geoff Simmons
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Pathetic half-measure on housing
    Yesterday, Paddy Gower thought he had a big scoop. He had leaked Budget docs alluding to a big government-lead house-building programme in Auckland. Today, the pathetic truth is revealed. The Budget puts only $52.2m – as a one off –… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Good idea on child poverty. Pity about the tinkering package.
    I can only speak personally, but I am genuinely pleased that the government is following through on its promise to focus on child poverty. New Zealand’s rates of child poverty are appalling, and anything that helps to bring them down… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Blah Budget: Why there won’t be a surplus next year, either.
    Having failed to reach surplus in this, his promised year, Bill English looks set to fail next year, too. Having been over-optimistic this year to the tune of almost $1.2b – comparing BEFU 2014 to BEFU 2015 - Treasury has… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    1 day ago
  • Fuck TV3
    TV3 has announced that they will be shitcanning Campbell Live. Oh, there'll still be a programme - but it won't have John Campbell, it'll only be four days a week, and it will almost certainly turn into the sort of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago

  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    4 hours ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    4 hours ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    5 hours ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    5 hours ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    5 hours ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    5 hours ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    8 hours ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    8 hours ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    8 hours ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    10 hours ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    1 day ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    1 day ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    1 day ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 days ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    2 days ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    3 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • State of origin
    Kiwis are increasingly concerned about the food they give their families. New Zealand consumers have the right to know where their food has come from, particularly when it involves animals, and should be able to expect our Government to label… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    3 days ago
  • Relationships Aotearoa
    It is disturbing that Relationships Aotearoa, a voluntary organisation set up in 1949 to help couples struggling with their relationships following the upheavals of World War II, may be forced to close, says Acting Spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community… ...
    3 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • House prices to a crack $1 million in 17 months
    The average Auckland home is on track to cost $1 million in 17 months’ time if nothing substantial is done to rein in soaring price rises, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland’s house prices have skyrocketed 63 per cent… ...
    4 days ago
  • Vital support services can’t be left in lurch
    The National Government has big questions to answer about how a provider of services to thousands of vulnerable New Zealanders is set to fold, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. Relationships Aotearoa which provides support and counselling to families, individuals… ...
    4 days ago
  • Treasury and IRD on a capital gains tax
    Both the Treasury and IRD have been advising the National Government on the benefits of a capital gains tax. Documents released to the Green Party under an Official Information Act request show that John Key has been selective with the… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    4 days ago
  • Charity legislation needs review
    It is unacceptable that the big corporate based charities claim  millions in annual income tax exemptions, while small community based and operated non-profit organisations  struggle to gain official charity status, Labour’s acting spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community Sector Louisa… ...
    4 days ago
  • John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis
    John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed… ...
    4 days ago
  • Keep our Assets Christchurch Campaign: An update
    I recently presented my submission to keep Christchurch Council assets at the Christchurch City Council’s public hearings on its 10 year plan on 13 May. The hearings are live-streamed and recorded so you can watch them on www.ccc.govt.nz. The Council’s… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    4 days ago
  • John Key finally admits there’s a housing crisis
    John Key’s weak measures to rein in the astronomical profits property speculators are making are an admission – finally – that there is a housing crisis, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “But yet again National is tinkering with the housing… ...
    5 days ago
  • Government stifles voices in CYFs review
    The Government’s exclusion of the Māori Women’s Welfare League in a panel on the future of CYFs is a cynical ploy to stifle views, says Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “It's unbelievable that a significant review on the future… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Otago Chamber of Commerce
    Thank you very much for the opportunity to be here today. It’s a pleasure as always to be back in the town that raised me. Growing up in St Kilda meant that there was one thing that was a big… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key can’t just be Prime Minister for Parnell
    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In… ...
    1 week ago
  • Stop the conversions
    This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some  lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • More regional jobs go in Corrections reshape
    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka face closure… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s climate meetings off to a bumpy start
    On Wednesday, I attended a hui and an evening meeting that the Government had organised in Nelson as part of its climate change consultation tour, to support the Nelson community telling the Government to take meaningful action on climate change.… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers the only ones left feeling blue
    Ministry of Social Development bosses could have saved themselves thousands of dollars in consultants’ fees by providing staff with rose-tinted spectacles, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. A report out today reveals the Ministry is spending over half a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Why are the regions still facing restrictions?
    Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today. “Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best… ...
    1 week ago
  • The high costs of weak environmental regulation
    Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is described on the Department of Conservation website as “Canterbury’s largest and New Zealand’s fifth largest [lake], and an internationally important wildlife area.” But the lake is also polluted by nutrients leaching from farms in the catchment.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Submissions to Wellington City Council on their Gambling Venues Policy
    Every three years Councils across the country are required to check that their gambling venue policies are still fit for purpose and they can choose to consult on their policy if they are thinking of making changes. Councils don’t have… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank action shows Govt out of touch and out of ideas
    The Reserve Bank’s unprecedented measures today show it understands the serious risks of the overheating housing market – in complete contrast to John Key’s refusal to acknowledge the crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The Bank is right to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Send us your snaps: 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year we've hit a milestone. We're turning 25.To help celebrate a quarter of a century, please send us your photos from the last 25 years of the Green Party Aotearoa New Zealand! Note: Photos must be jpg, gif or… ...
    1 week ago
  • 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year the Green Party sends 25. To help us celebrate a quarter of a century please send us you photos of 25 years of the Green Party!Photos must be jpg,gif or png and smaller than 2MB. If you are… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bay growth plan too little too late
    Today’s Bay of Plenty growth study from MBIE is another example of Government spin - lots of talk but little action, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “This is a region that desperately needs to develop the downstream processing… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government bows to ACC pressure
     The Government has finally buckled to pressure from Labour and the New Zealand public in making a half billion dollar cut to ACC levies, but the full benefits are two years away,” says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “$500 million over… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • False figures cloud Auckland transport facts
    The Prime Minister should apologise and issue a correction after both he and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have been caught out misrepresenting facts on Auckland’s transport spending, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Both John Key and Simon Bridges have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt books confirm National can’t post surplus
    The last publication of the Government’s books before the budget shows National will break its promise of seven years and two election campaigns and fail to get the books in order, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • US state joins NZ with GE food labelling
    New Zealand has a similar law making the labelling of many GE foods compulsory, but the Government seems to let it slide.  Because the government has not monitored or enforced our GE food labelling laws since 2003, it seems the… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago

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